Former 2014 Indiana commit James Blackmon Jr. said he would take a final visit to Bloomington before making his second college decision.
Wednesday evening, he made it clear he was following through with his promise. Blackmon announced via his Twitter account that he will visit IU this weekend, only a week after his official visit to Kentucky.
“IU visit this weekend #IUBB,” he said.
The 6-foot-3 combo guard from Marion High School has also taken an official visit to Michigan (Sept. 27) and is considering Michigan State and Kansas, as well.
The 247Composite rates him as the No. 31 prospect and No. 12 shooting guard in the 2014 class.
Lyle might visit, as well
According to multiple media reports, 2014 guard JaQuan Lyle said there’s a “possibility” he will visit IU this weekend for its exhibition against Southern Indiana.
The long-time Indiana target has recently reappeared on the Hoosiers’ recruiting radar after he transferred from Evansville Bosse to Huntington Prep (W.Va.) and subsequently parted ways with Louisville.
Indiana coach Tom Crean visited Lyle in West Virginia on Tuesday, and the No. 22 prospect in the 2014 class has said he still has plenty of interest in the Hoosiers’ program.
The Indiana coaching staff was on the road Tuesday, making stops at Huntington Prep in West Virginia and at Wilbraham and Monson Academy in Massachusetts.
At Huntington Prep, the staff stopped in to see 2014 guard JaQuan Lyle, the former Evansville Bosse guard who will finish his high school career against an aggressive national schedule. Huntington Prep is also home to other top prospects like Miles Bridges (2016), Thomas Bryant (2015) and Montaque Gill-Caesar (2015).
Lyle, the No. 22 prospect nationally in the 247Composite, told Inside the Hall recently that Indiana is a school he’s considering in the aftermath of his decision to de-commit from Louisville. He’s taken unofficial visits to Connecticut and Memphis this fall, but won’t be able to take any official visits until taking the SAT next month.
On his Twitter account, Lyle posted the following late Tuesday afternoon: “Shoutout to Coach Crean for coming in after school today.”
The recruiting process for class of 2014 guard JaQuan Lyle has had its share of twists and turns.
He’s been offered scholarships by elite schools. He’s switched AAU teams multiple times. He’s transferred from Evansville Bosse to Huntington Prep. He’s made a verbal commitment, only to rescind it months later. He’s drawn love and scorn from fans on social media.
For Lyle, it’s all been a learning process.
In an interview on Friday afternoon with Inside the Hall, the No. 22 prospect in the 247Composite reflected on what he’s learned over the last three years.
“A lot of kids get lied to or whatever or coaches tell you what you want to hear,” he said. “What I’ve learned from it is that you can only believe so much. Everything sounds so good, but when you get there, it could be the complete opposite.”
In late June, Lyle appeared set on attending Louisville. He gave a verbal commitment to the defending national champions after a lengthy recruiting process in which Indiana was involved.
And even though he’d been going through the process for three years, Lyle looks back on that decision and admits he made it too quickly. He re-opened his recruitment on Sept. 13.
Class of 2014 Evansville Bosse guard JaQuan Lyle announced on Wednesday that he’ll attend the University of Louisville.
Lyle, the No. 22 player in the class of 2014 according to ESPN.com, trimmed his list to Florida, Indiana, Louisville and Tennessee earlier this month at the NBPA Top 100 Camp at the University of Virginia and said he would take official visits to all four finalists.
But Lyle opted to end the process early and offered the following comment via his Instagram account:
“I’m going to be a cardinal and attend the University of Louisville for college. Thanks to everyone who has supported me. Also thanks to all the coaches who have been recruiting me. I think it’s the best decision for me and my family.”
Indiana currently has one commitment in the class of 2014, guard James Blackmon Jr., but is targeting several top players including Dante Exum, Goodluck Okonoboh, LeRon Black, Phil Booth and Ahmed Hill.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — The National Basketball Players Association Top 100 Camp ran Thursday morning through Saturday night at Paul Jones Arena on the campus of the University of Virginia.
Inside the Hall was in attendance and has compiled final stats and observations on many of the Indiana recruiting targets who participated:
CLASS OF 2014
· James Blackmon Jr. (10.0 ppg): Blackmon Jr. didn’t arrive in time to participate in Thursday morning’s session due to commitments the previous night with the Indiana Junior All-Stars, but he quickly found his shooting touch on Thursday evening. The future IU guard scored 11 points to cap off the night and stayed consistent throughout the camp which helped earn him a spot on the 10-man all-star team. Blackmon Jr. does an excellent job of using screens to get his shot off and even when he’s being checked closely, he has the ability to create space and get his shot off.
· LeRon Black (8.9 ppg): This is the second time we’ve watched Black in a month and a half and both times, he’s been a high energy guy that can score the ball in multiple ways. His midrange game is becoming a strength at 6-foot-7 and he can also step out to the 3-point line and knock down shots. He still seems to be at his best when he’s operating in the paint and using his upper body strength and athleticism to finish through contact at the rim. If he can continue to improve his midrange and perimeter stroke, he’ll become an even tougher matchup at the three or four.
· Phil Booth (9.8 ppg): Booth is capable of playing either guard spot, but in the two games we watched, he was primarily playing with the ball in his hands on the perimeter. While he’s not an overly explosive athlete, his handle is good enough to get him where he needs to be on the floor and he did a nice job of finding big men in the post. Off the dribble, Booth seems most comfortable either pulling up just short of the rim or going to the floater. He’s also more than capable of knocking down the 3-point shot as he connected on a couple of shots from distance in the two games we watched.
· Devin Robinson (5.9 ppg): After just arriving back in the U.S. from a trip to the adidas EuroCamp in Italy, Robinson could have coasted through camp, but instead, he showed why he’s quickly becoming one of the hottest names in the country. At 6-foot-8 and 178 pounds, Robinson is a long wing or stretch four that can put the ball on the floor and also step out and knock down 3-point shots. He’s grown three inches in the past year, which probably explains the above average ball handling ability for a player his size. In a lot of ways, he resembles former IU forward Christian Watford both physically and in how he plays. He’ll need to add strength, but Robinson was impressive in Charlottesville.
CHARLOTTSVILLE, Va. — On the first day of NBA Top 100 Camp at the University of Virginia, 2014 guard JaQuan Lyle announced he has narrowed his list of schools to Indiana, Louisville, Tennessee and Florida.
Lyle had previously been considering Illinois, UCLA and Ohio State.
The Evansville Bosse senior-to-be talks about narrowing his list as well as his plans for scheduling visits in the embedded video player below:
It’s been a busy couple of weeks for class of 2014 Evansville Bosse guard JaQuan Lyle.
On June 1, Lyle worked in a stop at Indiana while in town to watch a friend compete in the state track meet and followed that up with an unofficial visit to Louisville on June 9. In between, Lyle participated in practices and a pair of exhibitions for the Indiana Junior All-Stars against Kentucky.
Speaking after the Indiana Juniors dismantled Kentucky 86-73 on Saturday at St. Xavier, the five-star guard said that out of the head coaches recruiting him, he has the best relationship with Tom Crean and Rick Pitino.
“They just care about you as a person first before they care about you as a player,” Lyle said. “That’s what I really like and I think that’s what I really need.
“Coach Crean is a great person. He cares about you as a person and that’s what I really like.”
Indiana was the first school to offer Lyle in late 2010 and are one of the final seven schools he’s considering along with Louisville, Ohio State, Tennessee, Illinois, UCLA and Florida.
He said he plans to follow up his most recent visit to Bloomington with another unofficial next week after he returns from the NBPA Top 100 Camp in Charlottesville, Virginia.
“I just went over, talked to Coach Crean, watched film and watched them workout,” he said of the June 1 visit. “Pretty much just talked to them and had fun. I’ll probably take another visit this month, like an actual unofficial and play up and down with them.”
The next couple of weeks for Lyle will be full of travel as he’ll play in the Indiana Junior-Senior All-Star exhibition games, attend the NBPA Top 100 Camp, the Nike point guard Skills Academy, the LeBron James Skills Academy and play in front of college coaches at the EYBL Finals at the Peach Jam.
In early May at the Hensley Memorial Spiece Run-N-Slam Classic, Lyle talked about making a fall decision, but said in Louisville that he doesn’t have a definite timetable.
Evansville Bosse and Spiece Indy Heat guard Jaquan Lyle is a consensus top 20 player nationally in the 2014 class and is considering seven schools: Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Louisville, Ohio State, Tennessee and UCLA.
We’ve compiled two and a half minutes of high definition quality video of Lyle from pool play games from this past weekend’s Hensley Memorial Run-N-Slam at the Spiece Fieldhouse in Fort Wayne in the embedded media player below:
Indiana was the first school to offer a scholarship to JaQuan Lyle in late 2010.
And as his list of schools has been trimmed to seven — Indiana, Florida, Illinois, Louisville, Ohio State, Tennessee and UCLA — the Hoosiers remain active with the five-star guard from Evansville Bosse.
Tom Crean and associate head coach Steve McClain were in Evansville on April 24 for an in-home visit. Also in that week for in-home stops were Florida, Louisville, Ohio State and Tennessee.
The meeting with IU was a positive one, according to Lyle.
“We just talked a lot about the academic part and a lot about what I need to work on and what I need to do to be the best player I can be now and at the next level,” Lyle told Inside the Hall this weekend. “Coach Crean, he’s a great guy and really told me a lot of stuff that I didn’t know. We talked about the player development on the court, off the court and in the classroom. It was a great visit.”
Lyle has played well this spring for the Spiece Indy Heat, which has compiled a 6-3 record in EYBL play and is in good position for a berth in July’s Peach Jam.
At the first EYBL session in Los Angeles, he averaged 7.8 points, 6.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 2.8 steals and followed that up with 15.4 points, 6.8 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.2 steals per game at the second EYBL session at Boo Williams. This weekend at the Spiece Run-N-Slam Classic in Fort Wayne, Lyle had a 44-point game in a win over the Eric Gordon All-Stars.
He said some schools are recruiting him as a point guard and some view him as a combo guard. Regardless of his position in college, he knows there a few areas he needs to improve upon before he arrives on a campus in the fall of 2014.
“Decision making. Sometimes I make the wrong pass or do the wrong thing,” Lyle said. “Staying in shape and getting a lot stronger.”
After this weekend’s Run-N-Slam, Lyle has two more EYBL sessions (Dallas and Minneapolis) before he takes his ACT on June 8. He’ll then look to set up his official visits.
He plans to take all five that are available to him.